As the official attire of the Swiss Army, Fox’s High Voltage shorts include an impressive array of features; a stash pocket with goggle/sunglass wipe, thigh vent zips, four pockets, an MP3 player pocket, Velcro waist adjusters, a rear stretch panel, magnetic pocket closures, a removable mesh liner with synthetic chamois, and three cup holders. The lightweight brushed polyester outer shell is incredibly comfortable, and the thigh vents make them well suited to summer riding. The material doesn’t become uncomfortably heavy when sodden, and is fast drying, so is also practical in the winter. The fit of these shorts is spot on: secure around the waist, knee length to hide the pasty thighs, with a crotch that doesn’t catch on the saddle. The chamois, which is easily removable for washing, is not the most comfortable I’ve experienced but was perfectly okay for four or five hours of saddle time. The construction seems to be sturdy and the outer shell fairly resistant to abrasion. However, if your riding involves regular intimacy with rocky surfaces these might not offer the protection you require. Ignore the cross-country description on the swing tag; these shorts are suitable for a wide variety of riding and riders. If you’re looking for a lightweight, comfortable, versatile short that looks good on and off the bike, I recommend the High Voltage. LEIF ROY
The Meta TR 29, the new 130mm travel beautiful brushed alloy trail rig from Commencal just passed through the office recently. A solid, well-priced build makes this a very good option for a lot of people wanting that perfect blend between fun and pain. The go-everywhere, do-everything Meta in a neat little bundle.
One of the supercars of the modern era, the Pivot Firebird has been on the lips of everyone this past year. With Ed Masters piloting one to all sorts of reults, we got the Rod Bardsley to swing his leg over a Firey Bird and deliver some wise words of his own.
Afton are another newcomer in what seems a flood of new shoe brands, but the stylish look and comfort have got everyone talking. Want to be the snazziest dude among your mates? Look no further.
The Flat pedal shoe market has thickened recently, and one brand leading the charge is Ride Concepts. We did some skids this summer in a long term test, and are stoked there is a new player in the mix.
The Orbea Rallon is a hot topic. Good looking and extremely well put together, this pedigree machine gets the carpark talking. We got to spend a few days aboard the Spanish rig and collated some thoughts inside.
We got to spend some of our summer thrashing around on this beast. A user friendly 180mm do it all park bike, that’ll pop jumps and rip turns till the cows come home. Get in.